Great Spotted Woodpecker averages about one bird a year at Hilbre usually in late autumn, so it was a surprise when one appeared suddenly today across the south end at 07.15hrs this morning and was seen to carry on to Middle Eye where it rested momentarily on a post. It was then followed through a telescope off towards Little Eye and amazingly was seen to be snatched out of the sky by a female Peregrine! The falcon then proceeded to devour the unlucky Hilbre visitor by a yellow buoy on the shore to the east of the islands. Later the remains were identified as a juvenile, and judging by the direction of travel probably from Wales. A sad but interesting episode.
Another Common Sandpiper was on Middle for a time and 12 Shelduck ducklings were a very pleasing sight in the east gutter on the flood tide, but the rest of the records today were of more normal fare:- 3 Swifts, 5 Swallows, 3 Little Egrets, and a male Kestrel.
(DB + ESCA)
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